University of Maryland Extension

Home and Garden Information Center

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Low Light and Light Requirements - Houseplants

Back to Common Problems - Houseplants Low light levels can result in few or no flowers and spindly growth. To remedy the situation increase light levels by relocating plants closer to a light source or add additional artificial light sources. Houseplants can be classified according to their light...

Excess Water - Houseplants

Back to Common Problems - Houseplants Problems with excess water can result from poorly drained soil or over watering. Excess water reduces oxygen in the soil, which damages fine roots and renders the plant unable to take up water. Plants exposed to excess moisture show the same symptoms as plants...

Excess Light Sunburn and Light Requirements - Houseplants

Back to Common Problems - Houseplants Excess Sunlight : Some plants grow best in partial sun or shade. When shade-loving plants are exposed to full sun, leaf scorch or sunburn can occur. Strong sun and heat cause the breakdown of chlorophyll in the leaf. Damage appears as pale, bleached or faded...

Nutrient Deficiency - Lawns

Back to Common Problems - Lawns An all-over or mottled pale green to golden yellow color in established lawns may be the result of iron or nitrogen deficiency. Lawns with severe deficiencies may exhibit chlorosis, (yellow streaks form parallel to leaf veins). Long-term nutrient deficiencies result...

Fertilizer Injury - Lawns

Back to Common Problems - Lawns Banded streaks or irregular patterns in the lawn may be the result of uneven or excessive fertilizer application. Many lawn fertilizers contain readily available forms of nitrogen and the turf quickly responds to the fertilizer application. Areas where fertilizer was...

Excess Thatch - Lawns

Back to Common Problems - Lawns Thatch is the intermingled layer of living and dead stems, leaves, and roots that exist between the soil and green vegetation. A thin thatch layer (¼-½ inch) provides some benefits such as surface cushioning, increased wear tolerance, and temperature moderation...

Fertilizer Toxicity or High Soluble Salts from Excessive Fertilizer - Houseplants

Back to Common Problems - Houseplants High soluble salt levels are caused by the excessive use of fertilizers, frequent applications of fertilizer, and the incorrect use of fertilizer concentrates. Symptoms : The typical symptoms are browning or dieback of the leaf tips and margins. Sometimes...

Edema - Houseplants

Back to Common Problems - Houseplants Edema is a condition caused by the imbalance of water use by the plant and water uptake by the roots. Symptoms : Plants may develop wart-like or crusty raised bumps on the lower leaf surfaces. The bumps may become brown or necrotic and may be misdiagnosed as...

Dull Mower Blade/Mower Injury - Lawns

Back to Common Problems - Lawns Mowing injury may be direct physical damage or it may cause lawn deterioration due to poor mowing practices. A dull mower blade may cause the turf to have a brown cast or look ragged after mowing and can make turf more susceptible to disease. Sharpen or replace mower...

Drought Stress - Houseplants

Back to Common Problems - Houseplants Drought : Plants wilt and leaves curl when roots are unable to supply sufficient moisture to the stems and leaves. Wilting for short periods of time does not harm plants. Sometimes a plant wilts on a hot day because moisture is evaporating from the leaves...

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